News | D.C. Jazz Festival announces 2011 lineup

Update: Read CapitalBop’s just-released DC Jazz Fest guide, with picks for what to go see!

Roy Hargrove will lead his RH Factor on the National Mall at the 2011 D.C. Jazz Festival. Courtesy pladys

by Giovanni Russonello
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The D.C. Jazz Festival has announced its 2011 lineup, and it’s a very exciting one. The festival, which will run from June 1 to 13, includes headlining performances from vocalist Bobby McFerrin, trumpeter Roy Hargrove and pianist and Latin jazz pinoeer Eddie Palmieri, all winners of multiple Grammy Awards.

The festival is reprising its popular, daylong Jazz on the National Mall concert, which went dormant last year. In it, Hargrove will lead his hip-hop/jazz group the RH Factor, and Palmieri his own All-Star Salsa Orchestra. Other performers throughout the day will include Chilean vocalist Claudia Acuña and jazz harmonica player Frédéric Yonnet. That’s on June 12, starting at 1 p.m.

The festival also maintains its strong commitment to promoting the local scene. For one, McFerrin will perform at the Warner Theater in tandem with Howard University’s noteworthy Afro-Blue Reunion Choir on June 13. And the DCJF’s Jazz in the Hoods series continues this year, meaning the festival will in basically throw its logo on – and its PR weight behind – every jazz show going on across D.C. during that two-week period. That includes shows at clubs, restaurants and other small venues.

The festival will conclude with a focus on another city, though – the one where jazz was born. New Orleans. The closing showcase on Sunday, June 13 will be called “A Night in Tremé: The Musical Majesty of New Orleans.” Feeding off of the HBO series Treme, which has raised America’s awareness of the Big Easy’s musical vibrancy, the concert will be hosted by actor Wendell Pierce, who stars in the TV show. The performers will include the Rebirth Brass Band, clarinetist Dr. Michael White, saxophonist Donald Harrison, trombonist Big Sam Williams, and trumpeter James Andrews.

The full schedule of performances, including dozens of Jazz in the Hoods shows, will be fully unveiled in the coming days.

On a more personal note, we can’t let on too much at this point but there is some exciting CapitalBop-related DCJF news coming down the pipeline. Stay tuned for more on that in days ahead….

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